This has become a family favorite recipe! I have found that f the pan is not hot enough, the bread will stick. My oven seems to take longer to preheat than most so I add a few extra minutes. The other option is to use parchment paper. It also doubles well.
I have made this bread several times now and have never been disappointed. This time I did 2 cups white and 1 cup whole wheat. It was awesome! It was completely devoured. I use a ceramic finished cast iron dutch oven and coat the loaf with cornmeal. Next time I think I'll branch out and try some olives and roast garlic.
As an update to this review: We continue to make this awesome bread and now that I've bought a smaller dutch oven it's even more perfect. This is one awesome bread recipe. I followed it exactly and found the directions to be clear and easy to follow. Used all purpose flour and white cornmeal for dusting. I was really worried when I went to put it in the oven as it looked flat and I was afraid it wouldn't rise to anything. Boy was I wrong, I baked exactly as directed in my stone bread baker (don't know the right name for it), next time I might lower the uncovered temp a bit as others suggested as the tip was a little dark but it didn't hurt the taste. It rose to make a lovely round, crusty, bread with just the texture and crumb you want from a rustic bread. DH even claimed this as his new favorite - it'll be fun experimenting with this, think next time I might add some herbs or olives just for fun and maybe try with part wheat flour but it's perfect the way it is.
This is an awesome no worry bread. I had a dinner party and they asked where I bought the bread!!! When I told them I made it, they were shocked!! This is so easy and delicious. I've made this bread three times now and no flaws!!
This recipe is soooo good. A thick very crusty outside and a light airy inside. I see some people did not use their Le Creuset to do this recipe. If your pan did not come with the stainless steel knob you can purchase this seperately, no you should not use the black knob to make this recipe. I saw someone had sticking in their new Le Creuset, Try letting the loaf cool down more before you remove it from the pan - that should take care of any sticking.
I thought this was going to be a total disaster because the dough was so sticky I lost some of it to the bowl and towel. I guess I just didn't use enough flour on my hands and work surface. The outcome was, however, FANTASTIC! This produces a fabulous, chewy, crusty, rustic loaf of belly goodness. I used a cast iron dutch oven, and did an initial rise of about 20 hours. I served with a balsamic/olive oil dipping sauce, and butter too. It was just great both ways. Thanks for posting!
Excellent, excellent bread! By far the best crusty, rustic loaf I've ever made. I borrowed a 5-qt. cast iron dutch oven to try out this recipe, and bought one of my own just to make this bread (which I will do again and again!). As mentioned by another reviewer, don't use Le Creuset as the temperature is too high and will melt the handle.
What a great recipe........the bread turns out just like the boutique, artisian loaves that cost a bundle. I followed the instuctions given here exactly, but would like to try adding Kalamata olives and/or rosemary next time, or even sun-dried tomatoes. I served this with olive oil for dipping, it was a hit!
I've been playing with this recipe for a few weeks. The original Mark Bittman NY Times recipe has slightly different directions: you must rise 12-18 hours, then at least 2 hours on second rise--Bake 500 for 30 minutes and then uncovered at 450 for 10-15 minutes. I've had great result with the original recipe. Everyone should try this. One thing to be aware of ... some people have reported melting the handle on their expensive LeCreuset dutch oven. I bought a cheap dutch oven to do this bread in and I will save my good pan for lower temps.
My favorite homemade bread. Delicious flavor and texture. My biggest problem is that it's eaten almost as soon as it's out of the oven - I can't make it fast enough for my family.